HC Deb 21 November 1966 vol 736 cc924-5
19. Mr. Hector Hughes

asked the Minister of Public Building and Works what procedure he adopts to investigate the security and safety of ground upon which new buildings are to be built with his authority and under licence from him.

Mr. Prentice

Where my own Department intends to build, the normal practice is to explore the subsoil of the site by sinking trial or bore holes and taking samples for laboratory analysis.

I am not responsible for the investigation of the ground in those cases where I issue a licence under the Building Control Act.

Mr. Hughes

Was that procedure adopted in the case of the College of Zoology at Aberdeen University, which collapsed with loss of life and injury?

Mr. Prentice

I was careful to say in my original reply that the procedures I described were appropriate to building projects of my own Department. This does not apply to the University of Aberdeen. The tragic events there are, I understand, to be the subject of a public inquiry.